STANLEY, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Court documents are bringing to light new details in a disturbing case in Gaston County where police say a father killed his 11-year-old son and set the family’s home on fire, injuring his daughter, before killing himself.
The documents also reveal the suspect’s criminal history.
Sometime in the overnight hours from October 20 to October 21, police say Russell Blakney killed his son, 11-year-old Cyrus, set the family’s home on fire, which injured Cyrus’ 11-year-old twin, and then investigators say Russell Blakney killed himself.
This all happened after police came knocking on Blakney’s door the night before, and they say he got into an hours-long standoff with them as they tried to serve the newly-released warrants, which show a history of domestic violence.
The victim, Russell Blakney’s wife, filed a protective order against her husband on Friday, October 20.
Later that night, investigators went to the family’s home to serve it, along with several warrants for Blakney’s arrest.
In the court document, the victim said she and her husband had an argument, and he held her down and threatened to kill her, pointing a loaded gun at her head.
Because of that protective order the wife filed, a magistrate issued three warrants for Russell Blakney’s arrest for false imprisonment, assault by pointing a gun, and felony possession of a firearm by a felon.
The last warrant is the one that contains new details about Blakney’s criminal history.
He was not supposed to have a gun because the court document says he was convicted of felony strangulation and suffocation in 2016 in Wisconsin and was only sentenced to a year in prison and probation, but by law, he could have gotten eight years in prison.
Officials say the suspect’s 11-year-old daughter is currently out of the hospital.
It’s unclear if Gaston County Police have interviewed her and her mother yet, as they had told QCN they wanted to do before they wrap up their investigation.